Clarence Hightower Re-elected Chair of the MnSCU Board of Trustees

Posted: June 19, 2013

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

Thomas Renier of Duluth re-elected vice chair

The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees Wednesday unanimously re-elected Clarence Hightower as chair and Thomas Renier as vice chair. Their one-year terms begin July 1.

“I am honored by my colleagues’ continued confidence in me,” Hightower said. “We are moving forward with a bold, ambitious agenda for advancing student success and Minnesota’s economic prosperity. I look forward to continuing our efforts to ensure access to an affordable, extraordinary education for Minnesotans from all backgrounds.”

“Chair Hightower’s leadership has served as the catalyst for a very successful year for the system,” said Trustee Margaret Anderson Kelliher, president and CEO of the Minnesota High Tech Association and former speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives. “We are working together with Chancellor Rosenstone, our college and university presidents, and system leadership in delivering the outcomes Minnesota needs from higher education. We are fortunate that Trustee Hightower will continue to serve as chair for an additional year.”

Hightower, of Plymouth, is executive director of the Community Action Partnership of Ramsey and Washington Counties, a member of a nationwide partnership organization of more than 1,000 agencies, and the largest partnership agency serving Minnesota. He previously served as president and chief executive officer of the Minneapolis Urban League. Hightower was first appointed to the Board of Trustees in 2002 and was reappointed in 2008 for a six-year term expiring June 30, 2014.

Renier, of Duluth, is the president of the Northland Foundation, a nonprofit organization involved in grant making, business lending and a variety of other initiatives to assist the children, families, older adults, businesses and communities of northeastern Minnesota. Prior to joining Northland in 1986, he served 11 years on the Arrowhead Regional Development Commission. Renier was first appointed to the Board of Trustees in 2004 and was reappointed in 2010 for a six-year term ending June 30, 2016.